KW 22: Facebook rebrands cryptocurrency wallet to Novi, Vodafone, Energy Web to link power grid assets, Blockchain gets university credit


Facebook rebrands cryptocurrency wallet to Novi: Facebook has announced that it has renamed a key component of its ambitious cryptocurrency project known as Libra. Henceforth, the company’s digital wallet, which it hopes to launch late this year, will be known as Novi instead of Calibra, which was said to have reminded some too much of the now outsourced cryptocurrency Libra. Libra continues to struggle with regulatory headwinds and partner decline. Facebook announced the Libra network last June with hopes of launching its cryptocurrency in 2019, but the project soon became mired in political and regulatory controversy.

Vodafone, Energy Web to link power grid assets: Vodafone has entered into a deal with blockchain network Energy Web to integrate distributed energy resources (DERs) with power grids using IoT and blockchain technology. For renewable energy generation, energy assets including solar panels, wind turbines and batteries need to communicate with the grid and require a secure identity to do so. Hence the partnership plans to deploy SIM-centric blockchain technology (SCB) with IoT connectivity from Vodafone Business.

Blockchain gets university credit: While blockchain isn’t a mainstay yet in college curriculums, more universities are offering courses exploring the technology and business and industry use cases, for example the Melbourne Institute of Technology. It’s an area of intense focus at RMIT University (formerly known as Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology and Melbourne Technical College), which has set up a Blockchain Innovation Hub that draws students from the business and technology schools and offers courses in blockchain technology to both groups of students.

Blockchain developers earn less than mobile developers: According to the latest report from DevQuarterly, blockchain developers overall earn much less than developers working on mobile apps, websites, and custom software, as well as data scientists. There are also significantly fewer developers working on blockchain technology, indicating that the industry is still in its infancy. DevQuarterly found that there are 467,000 web developers worldwide, earning between $61 and $88 per hour. The second-largest workforce was mobile developers, with 379,000 people worldwide earning between $57 and $84 per hour. The third-largest workforce was data scientists, who were by far the biggest earners out of all the different types of developers. According to the report, the 281,000 data scientists around the globe earned between $73 and $103 per hour.

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Tokensoft, a digital securities platform for enterprises and financial institutions, has used blockchain tech to distribute equity to investors in a $4 million funding round.


China’s congress proposes blockchain development fund: The National People’s Congress, China’s parliament and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, the most powerful political advisory body in the country, begun their annual sessions on May 22. A deputy to the National People’s Congress has suggested setting up a special fund for blockchain industry development. If accepted, this fund would be led by the government. The aim of the fund is to support the development and growth of a number of promising blockchain enterprises, encourage blockchain technology innovation, and cultivate a number of unicorn enterprises in the blockchain space.

World Economic Forum sets framework for blockchain: The World Economic Forum’s Global Blockchain Council has developed sixteen principles to protect users and preserve the values of the technology so that all can benefit. Rights are grouped into four broad pillars: Transparency & Accessibility – the right to information about the system; Privacy & Security – the right to data protection; Agency & Interoperability – the right for individuals to own and manage their data; and Accountability & Governance – the right for system users to understand available recourse. “The blockchain ecosystem needed a baseline for designing applications that preserve the rights of users,” said Sheila Warren, Head of Blockchain and Data Policy, World Economic Forum. “During our council meeting, we realized we could help curb many of the mistakes and missteps seen so far if we were able to provide developers, governments and executives with a ‘Bill of Rights’ style document.”


“Halving is not directly relevant to market liquidity or price. But it is an indispensable gear in the mechanics of bitcoin. It ensures that the computing power required to maintain the network is available and is a fundamental factor in increasing the market value.”
Bitcoin expert Christoph Lymbersky explains the importance of halving.


Buy Maradona with tokens at a fantasy game: Argentinian world soccer player Diego Maradona can now appear as a digital trainer in a fantasy football game. Collectibles company Panini America releases officially licensed trading cards based on blockchain that feature iconic athletes. The game company has developed a type of collection system that is reminiscent of Panini trading cards – but is digitally verified with blockchain. With the tokens collected, players can use Maradona as a coach for their teams.,

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